Friday, February 13, 2015

Big crowd converge at Cotabato City Plaza; other areas, urges Congress to pass BBL

From the Website of MILF

Big crowd converge at Cotabato City Plaza; other areas, urges Congress to pass BBL

A total of 47, 245 people from Maguindanao, Cotabato City and nearby areas converged at the Cotabato City Plaza on February 10, demanding for immediate passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).

Similar peace rally were also held in Marawi City, where 150, 000 people attended. The number of participants that joined the rallies were, Poblacion Pikit, North Cotabato- 69, 332; General Santos City- 8, 205; Davao City- 1, 474; Datu Paglas in Maguindanao- 61,000; Isabel City, Basilan- 550; Jolo, Sulu-15, 321; Bongao, Tawi-Taw- 3, 500; Baloi, Lanao Del Norte, 14, 700; and Batasang Pambansa or House of Representatives, 3,000.

Official tally seen by this writer divulged the total number of participants that joined the peace rallies were 377, 327.  All the speakers at the city plaza were one in saying that the deliberations on the BBL must continue and not let a single incident, like the one at Mamasapano affect the GPH-MILF Peace Process. The crowd chanting Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar also chanted “PEACE” for Mindanao as they no longer want war.

The peace rallies held in various major cities of Mindanao and other areas were spearheaded by the Mindanao Alliance for Peace (MAP) headed by Dr. Abdulmanan Gayak with the support of the League of Bangsamoro Organizations (LBO); UNYPAD, and other non-government organizations and civil society groups. Representatives of the indigenous peoples, Christian groups, women and youth sector also spoke during the rally. Catholic nuns also joined the peace rally.  

In an interview, Drieza Al-Moro of Lanao Del Sur, asserts the importance of enacting the BBL rather than suspending it as it will affect the entire peace process.

On the other hand, Malacañang through Communication Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. reiterates the call of President Benigno Aquino II to congress to continue the deliberations on BBL as ”the next steps for the proposed law should be in pursuit of the peace process”. The simultaneous rallies would only mean that “PEACE IS ONE AND THE ONLY CLAMOR OF THE MOROS, IP’s AND CHRISITIANS IN MINDANAO”, as war is catastrophic to everyone, in their lives, properties and the future of their children.


Malacañang reiterates calls for lawmakers to pursue Bangsamoro peace process

Malacañang in an earlier statement reiterated its call on lawmakers to pursue the Bangsamoro peace process. Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the next steps for the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) should be in pursuit of the peace process.

In an interview, Sec. Coloma said in Tagalog, "Dahil kung hindi ito isusulong at iisa lang naman ang alternatibo, iyong pagbalik sa karahasan at iyong kawalan ng kasiguruhan hinggil sa pag-unlad at istabilidad ng Mindanao" . "Kaya iyan po ang mga dapat na magnilay po ang ating mga mambabatas na ito ang magiging consequence kung mababalam o titigil ang prosesong pangkapayapaan," Coloma added.

The hearings on BBL has been suspended in the two Chambers of Congress with senators and congressmen saying they should await first the results of the inquiries on the Mamasapano incident that killed 44 members of the Philippine National Police Special Action Force (PNP-SAF) when they intruded into Tukanalipao, Mamasapano, Maguindanao to capture, dead or alive international terrorist Zulkifli Bin AbHir and his cohort Basit Usman.

Marwan was allegedly killed in the said incident and a DNA test conducted confirmed it.

Mamasapano is a wide area and is a “Dragons’ nest” where Moro rebels belonging to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters are encamped. The encounter also resulted to the death of 18 MILF rebels, wounded 12 and also killed 4 civilians.